Corigliano, John (Paul)
Corigliano, John (Paul)
Corigliano, John (Paul) , notable American composer and teacher, son of John Corigliano; b. N.Y, Feb. 16, 1938. While still a child, he began to play the piano and to try his hand at composing. During his high school years, he studied orchestration on his own by listening to recordings with scores in hand. He then was a student of Luening at Columbia Univ. (B.A., 1959) and of Giannini at the Manhattan School of Music. He worked as a music programmer in N.Y for WQXR-FM and WBAI-FM (1959–64), as an assoc. producer of music programs for CBS-TV (1961–72)2), and as music director of the Morris Theater in N.J. (1962–64). After teaching at the Coll. of Church Musicians in Washington, D.C. (1968–71), he was on the faculties of the Manhattan School of Music (from 1971) and of Lehman Coll. of the City Univ. of N.Y (from 1973), where he later held the title of Distinguished Prof, (from 1986). He also taught at the Juilliard School in N.Y (from 1991). Corigliano established his considerable reputation as a composer with his Clarinet Concerto (N.Y, Dec. 6, 1977). From 1987 to 1990 he served as the first composer-in- residence of the Chicago Sym. Orch. His deeply felt Sym. No. 1, dedicated to the victims of AIDS, was premiered by that orch. under Barenboim’s direction on March 15, 1990. The highly successful premiere and subsequent recording of the score brought Corigliano international acclaim. His opera, The Ghosts of Versailles, added further lustre to his reputation at its critically acclaimed premiere by the Metropolitan Opera in N.Y under Levine’s direction on Dec. 19, 1991. Corigliano has won many honors and awards and received major commissions. In 1968–69 he held a Guggenheim fellowship. In 1989 the American Academy and Inst. of Arts and Letters gave him its award for music, and in 1991 he was elected to its membership. He also won the Grawemeyer Award in 1991 from the Univ. of Louisville for his Sym. No. 1. In 1993 he served as Distinguished Artist-in-Residence of the Winnipeg Sym. Orch. He was Distinguished Composer-in-Residence of the Helsinki Biennale in 1997. In his diverse output, Corigliano has produced a body of music notable for its remarkable originality and craftsmanship. Despite the apparent dissonant freedom of his polyphonic writing, his music retains a firm tonal anchorage.
DRAMATIC The Naked Carmen, electric rock opera (1970; transcription of Bizet’s Carmen)’, The Ghosts of Versailles, grand opera buffa (N.Y, Dec. 19, 1991); incidental music for plays; film scores, including The Red Violin (1998). ORCH.: Elegy (1965; San Francisco, June 1, 1966); Tournaments (1965; Louisville, Jan. 11, 1980); Piano Concerto (San Antonio, April 7, 1968); Gazebo Dances for Concert Band (Evansville, Ind., May 6, 1973; also for Orch., 1974; Woodbury, N.J., Feb. 20, 1981; also for Piano, 4-Hands, 1972); Aria for Oboe and Strings (1975; 4th movement of the Oboe Concerto, 1975; also for Oboe and String Quintet, 1985); Oboe Concerto (NY., Nov. 9, 1975); Voyage for Strings (1976; Rockland County, N.Y, April 22, 1977; also for Flute and Strings, London, Nov. 26, 1983; also for Flute and String Quintet, 1988); Clarinet Concerto (N.Y, Dec. 6, 1977); Pied Piper Fantasy, flute concerto (1981; Los Angeles, Feb. 4, 1982); Promenade Overture (Boston, July 10, 1981); 3 Hallucinations (1981; Syracuse, N.Y, Jan. 22, 1982; based on the film score for Altered States)’, Summer Fanfare: Echoes of Forgotten Rites (Miami, June 21, 1982); Fantasia on an Ostinato (N.Y, Sept. 18, 1986; also for Piano, 1985); Campagne di Ravello: A Celebration Piece for Sir Georg Solti (Chicago, Oct. 9, 1987); Sym. No. 1 (1988–89; Chicago, March 15, 1990); Troubadours: Variations for Guitar and Chamber Orch. (St. Paul, Minn., Oct. 8, 1993); Fanfares to Music (1994; also for 11 Instruments, 1993); Chaconne for Violin and Orch. (1997; used in the film score The Red Violin, 1998; as a suite for Violin and Orch., N.Y, June 3, 1999); Nocturne (1997); D.C Fanfare (1997). CHAMBER : Violin Sonata (1963; Spoleto, July 10, 1964); Scherzo for Oboe and Percussion (1975); Aria for Oboe and String Quintet (1985; also for Oboe and String Orch., 1975); Phantasmagoria for Cello and Piano (Washington, D.C., May 1993); Fanfare to Music for 11 Instruments (N.Y, Oct. 20, 1993; also for Orch., 1994); Amen for Double Brass Ensemble (1994; also for Chorus); String Quartet (1995). KEYBOARD : Piano : Kaleidoscope for 2 Pianos (1959; Spoleto, June 28, 1961); Gazebo Dances for Piano, 4-Hands (1972; N.Y, Feb. 24, 1985; also for Concert Band, 1973, and for Orch., 1974); Étude Fantasy (Washington, D.C., Oct. 9, 1976); Fantasia on an Ostinato (Fort Worth, May 24, 1985; also for Orch., 1986). VOCAL: Petit Fours for Voice and Piano (1959); Fern Hill for Mezzo- soprano, Chorus, and Orch. (1960–61; Washington, D.C., Dec. 11, 1965; alsoso for String Orch., N.Y, Dec. 19, 1961); Poem in October for Tenor and 8 Instruments (N.Y, Oct. 25, 1970; also for Tenor and Orch., Washington, D.C., April 24, 1976); Poem on His Birthday for Baritone, Chorus, and Orch. (Washington, D.C., April 14, 1976; also for Baritone, Chorus, and Piano); the preceding 3 works constitute A Dylan Thomas Trilogy, choral sym. for Soloists, Chorus, and Orch. (1st complete perf., Washington, D.C., April 24, 1976); What I Expected Was… for Chorus, Brass, and Percussion (Tanglewood, Aug. 16, 1962); The Cloisters for Voice and Piano (N.Y, Nov. 15, 1965; also for Voice and Orch., Washington, D.C., May 2, 1976); Christmas at the Cloisters for Chorus and Organ or Piano (1966; NBC-TV, Dec. 25, 1967); L’lnvitation au Voyage for Chorus (1971; San Antonio, May 13, 1972); Wedding Song for Medium Voice, Melody Instrument, and Organ (1971); Creations for Narrator and Orch. (1972; rev. version, Milwaukee, Oct. 3, 1984); A Black November Turkey for Chorus (1972; San Antonio, Jan. 20, 1973); Psalm No. 8 for Chorus and Organ (San Antonio, Oct. 18, 1976); 3 Irish Folksong Settings for Voice and Flute (N.Y, June 18, 1988); Of Rage and Remembrance for Mezzo-soprano, Men’s Chorus with 12 Chimes, Timpani, 8 Cellos, and 4 Double Basses (Seattle, March 29, 1991); Amen for Chorus (Montreat, N.C., June 19, 1994; also for Double Brass Ensemble); Vocalise for Soprano, Electronics, and Orch. (1999).
M. Humphrey, /. C. (N.Y, 1989; rev. ed., 1994).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire